Brought up in the humble surroundings of the Russian Jewish quarter of Salford, and later in Moss Side, Manchester, Eric spent a timid, uneventful childhood with no interest whatsoever in sport. A life changing moment took him into the world of football where he developed the strength and confidence to believe that anything was possible. In his mid twenties he started his own textile business, trading in both the home market and overseas where he experienced some humourous and hair-raising adventures. In his late thirties, after hanging up his football boots, he was asked to join Sale Harriers and there began another sporting career, this time in athletics. Eric achieved his senior coaching badge and under his management, with his 'must win' mentality and organisational skills, the club enjoyed its most successful period in a one hundred year history. Over thirty-five years, the team won no fewer than seventy national titles and represented Great Britain and England in thirty-four European championships.